A recent major conference in New Zealand has released a statement on this significant disease and its impact for the Australian and New Zealand populations. By world standards we are low risk for viral hepatitis HOWEVER about half a million people are living with the consequences of the disease in the two above mentioned countries and fifty new cases diagnosed every day. So while it is important to consider hepatitis vaccination for travel, it’s also important to consider without intent to travel. The vaccine is cheap, safe and effective. All Australian children are offered a childhood vaccination program for hepatitis B but there are a lot of adults who need to catch up.
Getting Hepatitis B vaccinations and still smiling.
The Auckland Statement is an urgent call to action for our governments and the community at large to come together and curb avoidable deaths caused by viral hepatitis — including through setting targets for reducing transmission, increasing testing, and enhancing access to specific treatments. More info.
… Written by Dr John Kenafake, Sunshine Coast TMA